All but one of this year’s Varsity Cup fixtures will kick off at 7pm in a new innovation to allow for greater attendance at this season’s games.
The adjustment of the Varsity Cup will see one game a week broadcast on Monday nights, making way for the weekly Varsity Shield on Friday evening.
Varsity Cup founder Francois Pienaar believes the innovation will make FNB Varsity Cup fixtures far more accessible across the board.
‘With Varsity Cup games all being played at 7pm, everyone knows what time the fixtures are no matter what campus you are on. It also allows the students to finish their lectures, get dinner and get to the stadium for some #RugbyThatRocks.’
The 2020 tournament kicks off with a classic Northern derby with UP-Tuks taking on NWU – a repeat of last season’s semi-final. Both teams have announced new head coaches going into the season, with former Springbok flyhalf and 2007 Rugby World Cup winner Andre Pretorius taking over the reins at NWU, while Nico Luus will step up as head coach of UP-Tuks.
In the same round, current champion Maties will host Shimlas, the surprise package of 2019, who the Maroon Machine beat in the semi-finals. Maties will also head into the season with a new man in charge, Drikus Hancke, who steps in for Hawies Fourie who has taken over the head coaching role at the Cheetahs.
The 2020 season of Varsity Cup is also a promotion/relegation year, which will mean that the team that finishes on top of the Varsity Shield log, over the combined log of 2019 and 2020, will automatically be promoted to the 2021 season of Varsity Cup.
Meanwhile, the ninth-placed team of the Varsity Cup log, over the combined log of 2019 and 2020, will automatically be relegated to Varsity Shield in 2021.
The team that finishes eighth on the Varsity Cup and the team ending in second position Varsity Shield over the combined log of 2019 and 2020, will play in the promotion/relegation match on 21 April 2020. The winner of this match will play Varsity Cup in 2021.